By Katharina T. Kraus

In the Prolegomena, Kant indicates that the so-called psychological ideas can have a regulative use that is not only legitimate, but also beneficial for the study of psychological phenomena: the idea of an absolute subject, “as a regulative principle, serves perfectly well to destroy completely all materialistic explanations of the inner appearances of our soul” (Prolegomena 4:334). This paper offers a reconstruction and analysis of Kant’s argument against psychological materialism based on the §§46-49 of the Prolegomena. It draws further consequences from this argument for Kant’s accounts of the empirical self and of psychological explanations.

Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2021